Winter solstice falls on December 21 and, in some cultures, is known as “the day the sun stands still.” It is the shortest day of the year – with just 8 hours and 46 minutes of sunlight. It is also the astronomical beginning of winter. From this day forward, days will lengthen.
Cultural traditions abound on this day with mythical monsters who steal the sun and play tricks on humans in the darkness, such as Louhi in Finland. Or foster kinder beings, such as La Befana in Italy and Tomte in Scandinavia. And with these stories came traditions, such as the Norse tradition of the Yule, where they brought home a large log and celebrated while it burned.
Before humans understood astronomy, we told these stories to explain the darkness, entertain each other and keep our spirits alive during the winter months. Every tradition was an opportunity to come together, honor the light and remind ourselves that brighter days are ahead.
As we observe the winter solstice, we have curated your top-rated TrendSpotter posts from 2023 to keep you motivated as we navigate these shorter days:
The holiday season brings many ways to give and receive generosity. But recently, we have seen a shift in perceptions of generosity as well as giving rates. In this post, we pair the exciting research from The Generosity Commission with some actionable takeaways to help you get ahead of the curve in 2024.
Turnover is on the tip of every tongue in the social space. It is our “canary in the coal mine.” In this blog, we share insights from multiple sources, talk to experts and discuss how your social sector organization can address this pressing issue with precision. Pair with this actionable post – Nonprofit Talent Checklist – and you will be full of ideas to reverse this trend in 2024.
As we look at giving trends and evaluate ways to increase funding, many nonprofits are considering social enterprise – not only to better serve their mission, but also to make unrestricted income. Is it a trend or is it a fad? We break down these questions and more in this post – along with some actionable steps to help you start or ramp up an existing social enterprise in 2024.
The headlines are full of corporations doing good things for the community – but some have failed to reach their goals for creating social good. This is a challenge for companies – large and small – to be more strategic in their work, but it is also an opportunity for nonprofits to partner with business to ensure their success. To learn more, check out our top-rated blog and follow us on social media (Facebook, X, LinkedIn and Instagram) as we discuss this more in 2024.
We all want quick and easy these days, but change is a process that takes time and careful planning. As you consider change in 2024, whether it is a new strategic plan, new leadership team or new values, we encourage you to use time-tested change management principles to ensure that the change you are considering sticks. We promise you that a little planning now will save you time in the long run.
This holiday season we hope you’ll take a little time to revisit our TrendSpotters’ favorite posts and share any lessons you’ve learned in 2023 with us as we prepare for brighter days ahead in 2024.